B-83176, MARCH 17, 1949, 28 COMP. GEN. 524

B-83176: Mar 17, 1949

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UNLESS SAID CLAIMS ARE FILED PRIOR TO JULY 31. IS A COMPLETE BAR TO THE CONSIDERATION OF CLAIMS FOR OVERTIME COMPENSATION PERFORMED PRIOR TO AUGUST 24. WHICH CLAIMS WERE FILED SUBSEQUENT TO JULY 31. ARE APPLICABLE TO CLAIMS OF NAVY CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES FOR OVERTIME COMPENSATION COVERING SERVICES PERFORMED AFTER OFFICE DECISION OF AUGUST 24. THE DATE SAID DECISION WAS DISSEMINATED TO THE FIELD ACTIVITIES OF THE NAVY. IF ANSWER TO QUESTION NO. 2 IS IN THE NEGATIVE. WHETHER THE DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY IS AUTHORIZED TO MAKE PAYMENT ON SUPPLEMENTAL PAYROLLS PROVIDED THAT THE NAVY APPROPRIATIONS INVOLVED HAVE NOT LAPSED AND IN THE CASE OF LAPSED APPROPRIATIONS SHOULD SUCH CLAIMS BE FORWARDED TO GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE FOR SETTLEMENT?

B-83176, MARCH 17, 1949, 28 COMP. GEN. 524

CLAIMS - OVERTIME, LEAVE, AND HOLIDAY COMPENSATION UNDERPAYMENTS - LIMITATION FOR FILING THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 3 (B) OF THE ACT OF JULY 31, 1946, REQUIRING THAT CLAIMS COGNIZABLE UNDER SAID ACT FOR OVERTIME, LEAVE, AND HOLIDAY COMPENSATION BASED UPON THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN AMOUNTS COMPUTED AT DAY RATES AND SUCH COMPENSATION COMPUTED AT NIGHT RATES BE FILED WITHIN TWO YEARS FROM THE DATE OF THE ACT, CONSTITUTE A COMPLETE BAR TO THE CONSIDERATION OF CLAIMS EITHER BY THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE OR THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE, AS THE CASE MAY BE, FOR SUCH COMPENSATION EARNED DURING THE PERIOD MARCH 28, 1934, TO JULY 31, 1946, UNLESS SAID CLAIMS ARE FILED PRIOR TO JULY 31, 1948.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL WARREN TO THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY, MARCH 17,1949:

CONSIDERATION HAS BEEN GIVEN TO YOUR LETTER OF JANUARY 21, 1949, TRANSMITTING A MEMORANDUM DATED NOVEMBER 9, 1948, FROM THE CHIEF OF THE BUREAU OF SUPPLIES AND ACCOUNTS TO THE JUDGE ADVOCATE GENERAL OF THE NAVY, REQUESTING A DECISION ON THREE QUESTIONS THEREIN PRESENTED, CONCERNING THE PAYMENT OF CLAIMS TO CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES (INCLUDING FORMER EMPLOYEES) OF YOUR DEPARTMENT FOR OVERTIME, LEAVE, AND HOLIDAY COMPENSATION UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF THE ACT OF JULY 31, 1946, 60 STAT. 747. THE QUESTIONS SUBMITTED MAY BE SUMMARIZED AS FOLLOWS:

1. WHETHER OR NOT THE ACT OF JULY 31, 1946, SUPRA, IS A COMPLETE BAR TO THE CONSIDERATION OF CLAIMS FOR OVERTIME COMPENSATION PERFORMED PRIOR TO AUGUST 24, 1944, WHICH CLAIMS WERE FILED SUBSEQUENT TO JULY 31, 1948, OR WHETHER SUCH CLAIMS MAY BE CONSIDERED AND SETTLED IN THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE IF RECEIVED IN SAID OFFICE WITHIN TEN FULL YEARS AFTER THE DATE SUCH CLAIMS FIRST ACCRUED, AS PROVIDED BY THE ACT OF OCTOBER 9, 1940, 54 STAT. 1061?

2. WHETHER THE PROVISIONS OF THE ACT OF JULY 31, 1946, SUPRA, ARE APPLICABLE TO CLAIMS OF NAVY CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES FOR OVERTIME COMPENSATION COVERING SERVICES PERFORMED AFTER OFFICE DECISION OF AUGUST 24, 1944 (24 COMP. GEN. 155), BUT PRIOR TO ( OCTOBER 16, 1944), THE DATE SAID DECISION WAS DISSEMINATED TO THE FIELD ACTIVITIES OF THE NAVY, AND TO A FEW CLAIMS FOR SERVICES RENDERED AFTER OCTOBER 16 1944?

3. IF ANSWER TO QUESTION NO. 2 IS IN THE NEGATIVE, WHETHER THE DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY IS AUTHORIZED TO MAKE PAYMENT ON SUPPLEMENTAL PAYROLLS PROVIDED THAT THE NAVY APPROPRIATIONS INVOLVED HAVE NOT LAPSED AND IN THE CASE OF LAPSED APPROPRIATIONS SHOULD SUCH CLAIMS BE FORWARDED TO GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE FOR SETTLEMENT?

THE ACT OF JULY 31, 1946, 60 STAT. 747, PROVIDES, IN PART, AS FOLLOWS:

THAT ALL CLAIMS BY EMPLOYEES OR FORMER EMPLOYEES OF THE UNITED STATES FOR OVERTIME, LEAVE, AND HOLIDAY COMPENSATION BASED UPON THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN AMOUNTS HERETOFORE RECEIVED BY SUCH EMPLOYEES FOR OVERTIME, LEAVE, AND HOLIDAY COMPENSATION COMPUTED AT DAY RATES AND SUCH COMPENSATION COMPUTED AT NIGHT RATES PURSUANT TO DECISIONS OF THE COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES (23 COMP. GEN. 962; 24 COMP. GEN. 39, 155, 189, 550, 867), SHALL BE PAID BY THE APPROPRIATE DISBURSING OFFICERS FOR THE DEPARTMENT OR AGENCY UNDER WHICH SUCH COMPENSATION WAS EARNED: PROVIDED. THAT CLAIMS FOR AMOUNTS DUE DECEASED PERSONS OR PERSONS DETERMINED TO BE MENTALLY INCOMPETENT SHALL BE SETTLED IN THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE.

SEC. 2. THE HEADS OF THE DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES CONCERNED, OR SUCH SUBORDINATES AS THEY MAY DESIGNATE, ARE HEREBY AUTHORIZED AND DIRECTED TO CERTIFY TO THE PROPER DISBURSING OFFICER OR TO THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE, AS MAY BE APPROPRIATE, THE AMOUNT FOUND TO BE DUE UNDER ANY CLAIM AUTHORIZED TO BE PAID BY SECTION 1 OF THUS ACT. PAYMENTS MADE PURSUANT TO CERTIFICATIONS HEREBY AUTHORIZED SHALL, IN THE ABSENCE OF FRAUD, BE FINAL AND CONCLUSIVE.

SEC. 3. (A) NO AMOUNT SHALL BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT UNDER SECTION 2 OF THIS ACT ON ACCOUNT OF ANY COMPENSATION EARNED PRIOR TO MARCH 28, 1934, AND THIS ACT SHALL NOT APPLY WITH RESPECT TO ANY CLAIM FOR COMPENSATION EARNED SUBSEQUENT TO THE DATE OF APPROVAL THEREOF.

(B) NO AMOUNT SHALL BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT UNDER SECTION 2 OF THIS ACT UNLESS APPLICATION SHALL HAVE BEEN SUBMITTED IN WRITING, PRIOR TO THE EXPIRATION OF TWO YEARS AFTER THE DATE OF APPROVAL OF THIS ACT, OVER THE SIGNATURE OF THE PERSON PERFORMING THE SERVICE: PROVIDED, THAT CLAIMS OF DECEASED PERSONS OR PERSONS DETERMINED TO BE MENTALLY INCOMPETENT MAY BE SUBMITTED BY THEIR HEIRS OR PERSONAL REPRESENTATIVES.

SECTIONS 1 AND 2 OF THE ABOVE-QUOTED ACT EXPRESSLY PROVIDE THAT ALL CLAIMS COGNIZABLE UNDER THAT ACT--- EXCEPT CLAIMS FOR AMOUNTS DUE DECEASED PERSONS OR PERSONS DETERMINED TO BE MENTALLY INCOMPETENT--- SHALL BE PAID BY THE APPROPRIATE DISBURSING OFFICERS OF THE DEPARTMENT OR AGENCY UNDER WHICH THE COMPENSATION WAS EARNED UPON CERTIFICATION OF AMOUNTS DUE BY THE HEADS OF THE DEPARTMENTS OR AGENCIES CONCERNED. AND SECTION 3 (B) OF THAT ACT SPECIFICALLY PROHIBITS SUCH CERTIFICATION UNLESS CLAIM UNDER THE ACT BE FILED NO LATER THAN JULY 31, 1948. THUS, IT IS CLEAR THAT, WITH THE EXCEPTION NOTED ABOVE, CLAIMS UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF THE SAID ACT OF JULY 31, 1946, ARE NOT FOR SETTLEMENT BY THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE. CONSEQUENTLY, THE PROVISIONS OF THE SAID ACT OF OCTOBER 9, 1940, 54 STAT. 1061, FOREVER BARRING CLAIMS "COGNIZABLE BY THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE" IF NOT FILED WITHIN TEN YEARS AFTER THE DATE SUCH CLAIM FIRST ACCRUED, ARE NOT FOR APPLICATION TO CLAIMS UNDER THE ACT OF JULY 31, 1946, AND UNLESS SUBMITTED IN WRITING BY JULY 31, 1948, SAID CLAIMS ARE BARRED FROM CONSIDERATION. FURTHERMORE, SINCE THE LIMITATION PRESCRIBED BY SECTION 3 (B) OF THE SAID 1946 ACT ALSO IS APPLICABLE TO CLAIMS FOR AMOUNTS DUE DECEASED PERSONS OR PERSONS DETERMINED TO BE MENTALLY INCOMPETENT, WHICH CLAIMS, UNDER SECTION 2 OF THE ACT, ARE FOR CERTIFICATION BY THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE, NO ACTION THEREON MAY BE TAKEN BY THIS OFFICE UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF THE 1940 STATUTE WHERE SUCH CLAIMS ARE FILED AFTER JULY 31, 1948. ACCORDINGLY, IN ANSWER TO QUESTION 1, YOU ARE ADVISED THAT THE ACT OF JULY 21, 1946, SUPRA, IS A COMPLETE BAR TO THE CONSIDERATION OF CLAIMS FOR OVERTIME COMPENSATION AUTHORIZED TO BE PAID THEREUNDER UNLESS SUCH CLAIMS ARE FILED WITHIN THE PERIOD SPECIFIED IN SAID ACT.

WITH RESPECT TO QUESTION NO. 2, IT IS IMMATERIAL WHETHER THE OVERTIME WAS PERFORMED PRIOR OR SUBSEQUENT TO AUGUST 24, 1944, SINCE THE ACT OF JULY 31, 1946 (SECTION 3 (A) THEREOF), IS APPLICABLE SO LONG AS SUCH COMPENSATION WAS EARNED BETWEEN MARCH 28, 1934, AND JULY 31, 1946. THEREFORE, ASSUMING QUESTION 2 HAS REFERENCE TO CLAIMS COVERING SERVICES RENDERED ON OR PRIOR TO JULY 31, 1946, THAT QUESTION IS ANSWERED IN THE AFFIRMATIVE, RENDERING UNNECESSARY AND ANSWER TO QUESTION 3.